Rather than bring the trucks to the fertilizer, Inland Terminal in Woodland, Calif., has brought the fertilizer to the trucks.

Since the facility opened in March, it has handled about two dozen tanker trucks per day. Before it opened, those trucks would have had to drive 15 more miles to the Port of Sacramento or another 50 miles south to the Port of Stockton.

“We are taking trucks off the road between here and Sacramento and between here and Stockton,” says Johnny Council, president and chief operating officer of The Tremont Group Inc. and The Lyman Group Inc. in Woodland.

Most of the product arrives at the terminal by train. The facility has six tanks, each holding 600,000 gallons of liquid product. It was designed to have a total of nine tanks, and Council says plans are in the works to add three more by the fall.

The tanks are leased to different companies, such as Best Sulfur Products of Fresno, Calif., and Agrium Inc. of Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

Many of the companies probably don’t have the wherewithal to operate a terminal of this size by themselves, Council says.

Truck drivers, once they’re certified, can load product from the facility 24 hours per day using a computerized automated system.

Having material in the middle of the farm-rich Northern Sacramento Valley also helps agricultural chemical dealers manage their inventory using just-in-time ordering, says Steve Beckley, a consultant with S. Beckley and Associates in Woodland.